2018 full-year performance
In 2018, revenue totalled €2,643 million, representing a 2% increase on a comparable basis, with an acceleration in the second semester while organic growth reached 6%. On a reported basis revenue was 5% higher than 2017 and was including a negative foreign exchange impact of €110 million.
Over the year, Banks & Acquirers posted a revenue of €1,305 million, a decrease of 4% on comparable basis, but returning to a slight organic growth of 2% in the second semester. On a reported basis the activity decreased by 8% and was including a negative foreign exchange impact of €62 million.
The Retail Business Unit reported a revenue of €1,339 million, showing an increase of 8% over the period on comparable basis, with a strong organic growth acceleration in the second semester reaching double digit. On a reported basis, revenue increased by 22% during the year and was including a negative foreign exchange impact of €48 million.
Adjusted gross profit
In 2018, adjusted gross profit reached €1,048 million, down 2% compared to €1,066 million in 2017, and representing 39.6% of revenues.
Operating expenses contained throughout the year
In 2018, adjusted operating costs were €560 million, representing 21.2% of revenue, compared to €540 million in 2017 when adjusted operating costs represented 21.6% of revenue.
The short term savings plan launched in July 2018 delivered €15 million in the second half of this year.
18.4% of EBITDA margin
EBITDA was €488 million against €526 million in 2017, representing an EBITDA margin of 18.4%, down 1.9 points compared to the 2017 pro forma figures and 2.6 points compared to 2017 on a reported basis.
The Banks & Acquirers EBITDA stood at €277 million, down from €371 million last year. It represented a 21.2% EBITDA margin, down 4.8 points compared to the 26% pro forma EBITDA margin of 2017, significantly impacted by the negative geographical mix.
The Retail EBITDA came in at €210 million, up 18% versus last year. The margin this year represented 15.7%, up 1.9 points compared to the 2017 pro forma EBITDA, driven by the repositioning of the business unit carried out over the past two years.
EBIT and operating income
EBIT margin represented 15.7% of revenue and reached €416 million, compared to €453 million in 2017.
The other income and expenses reached €-48 million compared to €-30 million in 2017. The increase is mainly due to reorganization and M&A related costs. The operating income also includes price purchase allocation costs that represented €90 million in 2018 compared to €52 million in 2017 (see exhibit 4).
After taking into account the other income & expenses and price purchase allocation above described, operating income was €278 million (10.5% of revenue), against €371 million in 2017 (14.8% of revenue).
Net profit attributable to shareholders
The financial results account for €-38 million compared to €-27 million in 2017. Income tax were reduced to €52 million in 2018 from €86 million in 2017. This improvement is mainly explained by the US tax reform and a more favourable change in the country mix. Those changes led to an effective tax rate for the Group of 21.5%, against 25.0% in 2017.
In 2018, Group net profit attributable to shareholders came in at €188 million, against €253 million in 2017.
A strong cash generation despite increase of non-recurring expenses
The adjusted free cash flow4 was up 6% in 2018 at €285 million, i.e. a conversion rate of 59%. The group’s operations, post other income and expenses, generated a free cash flow of €238 million, i.e. an FCF/EBITDA conversion ratio of 49%. The capital expenditures increased as expected to €117 million against €88 million in 2017.
The Group's net debt increased slightly to €1,518 million against €1,471 million one year ago. This was mainly due to the purchase of the 20% stake in Ingenico Holdings Asia Limited, that of Airlink and €87 million of Ingenico’s shares buyback. The ratio of net debt to EBITDA is up to 3.1x from 2.8x at the end of 2017, but down from the first half of 2018 that landed at 3.6x.
Proposed dividend of €1.10 per share
In line with the Group’s dividend policy, a proposal to distribute a dividend of €1.10 per share will be presented to the Annual General Meeting of shareholders on 11th June 2019, representing a distribution rate of 36%. This dividend will be payable in cash or shares, according to the holder’s preference.
Performance in the fourth quarter of 2018
In the fourth quarter of 2018, Ingenico Group reported a revenue of €727 million, up 5% on a comparable basis compared to the fourth quarter 2017. On a reported basis, revenue increased by 5% including a negative foreign exchange impact of €17 million.
The Retail Business Unit continued to grow in the fourth quarter with revenue reaching €364 million, up 9% on a comparable basis. On a reported basis, revenue increased by 12%, impacted by a negative foreign exchange impact of €6 million. Compared with Q4’17, the various activities performed as follows on a like-for-like basis:
- SMB (up 20%): The division has delivered a very strong performance even accelerating in the second semester through a continued expansion of the merchant base as well as an increase in transactions with acquiring volumes growing by more than 30% during the quarter. In particular, the performance of SMB in Germany accelerated significantly over the quarter while gaining new clients and retaining its existing client base. The performance of this business will be recognized in the newly created Payone division in 2019.
- Global Online (up 8% ): The quarterly performance was in line with our expectations, benefiting from the boarding of new clients during the past quarters. Moreover, the division benefited from the continued momentum around some specific commercial events such as Single Day or Black Friday. The activity remained very strong in India, growing over 20%. During the quarter, the division announced a new global device fingerprinting solution and a new ACH solution (direct debit solution) in the US, and launched a new full service solution in Russia. New customers were signed over the quarter in the gaming sector (Kiwi Games) and the Online Travel Agency sector (Trip A Deal, eDreams).
- Enterprise (0%): The Q4’18 activity was in line with our expectations. The strong performance of our Western European instore gateway, i.e. Axis offsets the expected decline of our German OLV business. The hardware business performed well during the quarter, with a normative performance in Europe despite some macroeconomic headwinds which continue to impact the Turkish terminal activity. The rest of the activity remained driven by a very strong dynamic in North America, benefiting from renewal from large US retailers.
The Banks & Acquirers Business Unit has stabilized over the last quarter with a revenue increase of 1% in a comparable basis. On a reported basis revenue reaching €364 million, down 1% and negatively impacted by €11 million of foreign exchange. Compared to Q4’17, the various regions performed as follows on a like-for-like basis:
- Europe, Middle-East & Africa (down 21%): The division has carried on experiencing operational challenges in Q4’18 as well as a high comparable basis since Iran revenue in Q4’17 were representing €15 million of revenue, explaining half of the decline quarter on quarter. The region has experienced a slow down the decision process of some of our major clients in the Nordics and in the United Kingdom as well as a lack of execution in some mature countries. Nevertheless, the sequential performance of the division has stabilized on a quarterly basis.
- Asia-Pacific (up 12%): The quarterly performance was in line with the third quarter’s activity. In Asia, all markets expanded significantly apart from Thailand as the terminalization process ended as expected. Japan has delivered a strong quarterly growth as Ingenico Group capitalizes on its certified products and the ongoing EMV migration. India is now completely back on positive trend after the strong 2017 comparison basis, China outperformed expectations in Q4’18 with robust demand for APOS products in the last weeks of the year and Indonesia demonstrated its ability to maintain its leadership with the largest acquirers. The dynamic in Australia has been driven by the ongoing Telium Tetra deployment which will be a driver for 2019 as well.
- Latin America (up 61%): As expected, the division performed very strongly in Brazil in Q4’18, even accelerating from the Q3’18 performance year-on-year. Ingenico Group has massively increased its market share by partnering with most of the local acquirers selling its comprehensive range of products, including Android terminals such as the APOS. Moreover, the Group has developed, together with some of the largest acquirers, a Direct Sales model in which Ingenico Group sells the POS directly on behalf of the acquirer. Mexico remains a very promising market where Ingenico Group continued to grow during the quarter. The Group has benefited from the certification of Telium Tetra as well as the development of the hardware services in the country. The operations remained particularly strong in Colombia, Peru and Chile.
- North America (down 13%): The B&A performance in North America was largely impacted by a base effect due to two significant orders placed in Q4’17. Moreover, the activity has been impacted by the lower than expected contribution of EMV renewals in the United States which was slowed down by a longer certification process. In 2019 the Group expects to benefit from the Telium Tetra deployment to US-based clients and from different EMV renewal projects in the second half of the year. B&A in Canada experienced a very strong quarter driven by the deployment of Telium Tetra.
Launch of Fit for Growth transformation plan
2019 will be a year of transformation as the Group will be focused on three main structural projects through the Fit for Growth plan. This plan encompasses the following streams:
- Reposition B&A through a commercial redesign (client readiness, performance culture, brand leverage) and an industrial reorganization (product range simplification, Android development and R&D optimization);
- Accelerate Retail through Strategic Initiatives (SMB repeatable model expansion, Global Online verticalization, Asia and Latin America acceleration and expand our advanced acquiring offering) and a new operating model (customer centric, end to end engagement model);
- Improve operational efficiency and streamline G&A through a leaner and more agile organization, the optimization of the Procurement & IT and the consolidation of Data centers.
The Fit for Growth plan is expected to deliver €35 million net savings in 2019 while €15 million will be invested to seize future growth opportunities.
- Revenue: the group expect expects to achieve an organic growth of its revenue between 4% and 6% with B&A revenue flat compared to last year and Retail growing at double digit organic growth.
- EBITDA: The group targets an EBITDA above €550 million. This target factors in:
- c. €45 million derived from the contribution of BS Payone and Paymark;
- savings of €35 million and investments of €15 million related to the Fit For Growth plan;
- a negative impact from currencies of c. €5 million.
The group expects the Retail EBITDA above €270 million, and the B&A EBITDA at c. €280 million.
- Free cash-flow: the group has the ambition to reach a free cash-flow conversion rate of c. 50%.